How to Set Up Outlook Out of Office Calendar

Master the magic of Out of Office in Outlook. Block your calendar, craft replies, and enjoy your time away.

Set Up Outlook Out of Office Calendar feature is similar to hiring a virtual assistant whose sole responsibility it is to automatically respond to incoming emails while you’re on vacation. It functions similarly to a cordial doorman for your inbox, informing recipients that you are unavailable but promising to return as soon as possible.

Ultimately, accomplishing this involves more than simply time management. It’s about communicating effectively even when you’re not there in person, letting people know when you’re not around, and setting expectations. In summary, it’s obvious and ought to be at the top of your list of things to complete before turning off your computer. So without further ado, let’s go over how to configure Outlook Calendar for Out of Office.

What is Outlook “Out of Office”?

Sure thing! An “out-of-office calendar entry” in Outlook helps show when you’re on vacation or free. It’s a great way to stop meetings or appointments from being set during your time off. With Outlook Calendar, you can tell people you’re away, say how long you’ll be gone, and even have it say no to meeting invites for you. But remember, you have to set this up yourself because Outlook’s scheduling tools are mostly for planning meetings, not marking your time off.

How to Set Up Outlook Out of Office Calendar

How to Set Up Outlook Out of Office Calendar
  1. Launch the Outlook application.
  2. Press the Calendar icon located in the lower-left corner.
  3. To add a new event from the left pane, select the calendar. Take your shared work calendar, for example.
  4. Choose a date from the calendar.
  5. Click the New Appointment button under the “Home” tab.
  6. Give the event a clear title by filling in the “Subject” column.
  7. Choose the day you intend to leave work using the “Start time” selector.
  8. Choose the day when you will go back to work using the “End time” selection.
  9. Select “All day event” from the menu.
  10. Choose the “Out of Office” option from the “Show As” setting in the “Event” page.
  11. Create a custom message for anyone who will see your event (optional).
  12. Click the “Save & Close” button in the top-left corner.

Integrating Out of Office Calendar with Other Outlook Features

Outlook FeatureIntegration with Out of Office CalendarBenefits
Calendar:– Automatically blocks time on your calendar during OOO periods. – Shows OOO status on your calendar for visibility to others.– Prevents scheduling conflicts. – Informs colleagues of your availability.
Email:– Sends automatic OOO replies to incoming emails. – Can include your OOO dates and alternative contact information.– Keeps contacts informed of your absence. – Provides alternative channels for urgent matters.
Tasks:– OOO dates can be factored into task scheduling and deadlines. – Tasks can be postponed or delegated if they fall within OOO periods.– Ensures tasks are managed appropriately during your absence. – Prevents missed deadlines.
Contacts:– OOO information can be shared with specific contacts or groups. – Allows for targeted communication and expectations.– Keeps key contacts informed and aligned with your availability.

Tips for Maximizing Out of Office Efficiency

  1. Say When You’re Away: Tell people the exact dates you won’t be around.
  2. Tell Important People: Let the right coworkers and clients know you’ll be gone.
  3. Give Out Jobs: Make sure tasks get handed to others so work keeps going.
  4. Send Important Emails to Someone Else: Make a plan to forward urgent emails to a friend at work.
  5. Update Your Messages: Change your voicemail and social media to say you’re away.
  6. Give Other Ways to Contact: Tell people how else they can reach someone if it’s urgent.
  7. Explain Email Delays: Say if you can’t reply quickly to emails.
  8. Stay Professional: Keep your message serious, no jokes or casual talk.
  9. Be Friendly to Close Colleagues: If it’s someone you’re close to, add a personal touch to your message.


Can you schedule Outlook out of office?

Select File and then click Automatic Replies. In the Automatic Replies box, select Send automatic replies. Optionally, set a date range for your automatic replies. This will turn off automatic replies at the date and time you enter for the end time.

What is the difference between free and out of Office in Outlook Calendar?

Free: This indicates that the user is available for the appointment or meeting during the chosen time range. Busy: This indicates that the user won’t be available for the appointment or meeting within the chosen time range. Out of Office / Away: This indicates that the user is not currently working and is not in the workplace.

How do I create a holiday calendar in Office 365?

Under Calendar options, click Add Holidays. Check the box for each country whose holidays you want to add to your calendar, and then click OK. If a country’s or region’s holidays are already added to your calendar, the box for the country is checked in the Add Holidays to Calendar dialog box.

Editorial Staff
Editorial Staff
The Bollyinside editorial staff is made up of tech experts with more than 10 years of experience Led by Sumit Chauhan. We started in 2014 and now Bollyinside is a leading tech resource, offering everything from product reviews and tech guides to marketing tips. Think of us as your go-to tech encyclopedia!


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